Richard Coeur-de-Lion - Richard the Lionheart - Ричард I Львиное Сердце
Troubadours & Trouveres in the Courts of Eleanor of Aquitaine, Richard the Lionheart, Marie de Champagne & Geoffroy, Duke of Brittany
Emmanuel Bonnardot (voice, fiddle, rebec, cittern), Raphael Boulay (voice), Pierre Hamon (flute, three-holed pipe, bagpipes, double pipe, recorder, bamboo flute, six-holed pipe, drum), Brigitte Lesne (voice, harp, hurdy-gurdy, frame drum, small cymbals, tambourine)
Recording date: March 1996
This program is built around pieces associated with Richard Plantagenet (1157-1199), including the famous conductus for his coronation (track #11).
 Ms T (Paris, Bibliotheque Nationale, fr 12615 f.66 - "Manuscrit de Noailles"
 Ms K (Paris, Bibliotheque de l'Arsenal, 5198 p.342
 Ms O (Paris, Bibliotheque Nationale, fr 846 f.62v - "Chansonnier Cange")
 Ms O (Paris, Bibliotheque Nationale, fr 846 f.28 - "Chansonnier Cange")
 Ms M (aka W)(Paris, Bibliotheque Nationale, fr 844 f.53v - "Chansonnier du Roy")
 Florence, Biblioteca Mediceo-Laurenziana, ms Pluteo 29,1 f.465v
 Ms O (Paris, Bibliotheque Nationale, fr 846 f.4v - "Chansonnier Cange")
[8a] Wolfenbuttel, Herzog-August Bibliothek, ms 1206 f.179
[8b] Wolfenbuttel, Herzog-August Bibliothek, ms 1206 f.190v
 Ms O (Paris, Bibliotheque Nationale, fr 846 f.18 - "Chansonnier Cange")
 Ms O (Paris, Bibliotheque Nationale, fr 846 f.108v - "Chansonnier Cange")
 Florence, Biblioteca Mediceo-Laurenziana, ms Pluteo 29,1 f.318v
[12a] Florence, Biblioteca Mediceo-Laurenziana, ms Pluteo 29,1 f.465v
[12b] Florence, Biblioteca Mediceo-Laurenziana, ms Pluteo 29,1 f.466v
[12c] Florence, Biblioteca Mediceo-Laurenziana, ms Pluteo 29,1 f.467v
 Ms G (Milan, Biblioteca Ambrosiana R 71 superiore f.10)
 Ms. X (aka U) (Paris, Bibliotheque Nationale, fr. 20050 f.57r - "Chansonnier de Saint-Germain-des-Pres")
The sonorities here are particularly rich, and the phrasing and articulation of the melodies & lyrics is quite compelling.
This award-winning disc deserves credit not only for its excellent performances, but also for its success in creating atmosphere. From the disc's first sounds-cittern, flute, and harp-we know we've left the 20th century far behind and we've entered a mysterious and fascinating place. The place is the world of the 12th century, the time of the Crusades and of the exploits of Richard the Lion-Hearted, duke of Aquitaine, and king of England. The songs are about courtly love, longing for lovers left behind, and, in one remarkable song by Richard himself, about the despair and desolation he experienced as a prisoner. There also is a long, impassioned song in which the singer expresses his undying devotion: "Never will my heart leave you as long as I live." Songs are performed by a variety of first-rate singers, and are interspersed with lively instrumental selections.
- David Vernier
========= from the cover ==========
Richard Plantagenet (1157-1199), Duke of Aquitaine, Count of Poitiers and King of England, is one of those figures of history whose existence became the stuff of legend even . within their own lifetime. The memory of his exemplary courage - evoked by his epithet Coeur de Lion ('the Lionhearted') - has effaced that of family quarrels and political setbacks. In the eyes of posterity Richard embodies the medieval ideal of chivalry, the courtly knight who is also a protector and patron of troubadours and trouveres.
It was during the second half of the twelfth century that the tradition of troubadour poetry attained its high point, and began to inspire the works of the first trouveres. Richard the Lionheart and his family made a remarkable contribution to this new development. His mother Eleanor of Aquitaine, herself granddaughter of the first known troubadour, Guillaume IX of Aquitaine, played a crucial role in disseminating poetry written in the langue d'oc in the lands of the langue d'oil in what is now northern France, a good example being the lyrics of Bernard de Ventadorn who was for a while in her service. In their turn, Richard and his brothers (sons of the King of England) and half-sisters (daughters of the King of France) continued to encourage and support this poetic and musical tradition. Richard, for his part, liked to organise and preside at 'poetic tournaments'. Two texts known to be by him have come down to us, only one of which has survived with its melody. Gaucelm Faidit was among his faithful followers. Marie de Champagne welcomed Conon de Bethune and Gace Brule, in company with the great Chretien de Troyes, at what was then the most brilliant and flourishing intellectual circle to be found anywhere in northern France. The court of Geoffroy, Duke of Brittany, became the focus for an extraordinary cultural ferment in which poets writing in both langue d'oc and langue d'oil rubbed shoulders with the Celtic tradition of Arthurian legend. Geoffroy himself wrote, in collaboration with Gace Brule, the oldest known example in langue d'oil of a jeu-parti (a poetic 'dialogue' or 'debate' in alternating strophes).
The various genres of secular poetry can be distinguished more by their content, by the poetic themes they treat, than by their versified form, which consist of an indeterminate number of strophes of identical structure, often concluded by an envoi. In the canso the troubadours developed the conventions and topics of courtly love (as in Can vei la lauzeta): this then became the favourite subject matter of the trouveres.
The sirventes, a genre which is less frequently encountered, was a type of occasional poem, and often adopted a bitingly satirical tone. In some signal examples of the genre, Bertran de Born intervened directly in the internal quarrels of the Plantagenet family. He is just as capable of reproaching Richard with indecisiveness, when he addresses him as 'Oc e No' ('Yes and No'), as of flattering him as a way of encouraging him to go on a Crusade. The planh was another occasional genre, a funeral lament which derived from the Latin planctus. The planh on the death of Richard the Lionheart, Fortz chausa es, is an especially moving example of the genre.
The Crusades provided the trouveres with subject matter and inspiration for texts and melodies of equal poignancy. When, at the insistence of Richard and Philippe Auguste, Conon de Bethune and the Chastclain dc Coucy left to join the Third Crusade (1189), they sang of their suffering at having to leave behind both their respective ladies and the sweetness of their way of life. Guiot de Dijon imagined the lament of a woman waiting anxiously, full of anguish and desire, for her lover to return. Richard himself, taken captive on his return from the Crusade, wrote Ja nuns horn pris ne dira sa raison, a desolate lament in the form of a rotrouenge, a poem which occupies an utterly different world from that of the blandishments of courtly love.
The songs written in langue d'oc and in langue d'oil share identical poetic forms, but differ in musical idiom. The troubadours preferred a melismatic style and continuous melodic writing within the strophe, whereas the trouveres display a liking for simple- melodic structures with inbuilt repetitions and refrains (e.g. Chanterai par mon coraige).
In contrast to the canso and the pastourelle (e.g. L'aulrier m'en aloie), the lai did not derive from an Occitan tradition but was probably Celtic in origin. It is a long-breathed lyrical outpouring of considerable dimensions distinguished by its use of strophic forms and varied melodic contours (Lai du Chevrefeuille).
Finally, the second half of the twelfth century witnessed an extraordinary efflorescence of sung Latin poetry, both liturgical and non-liturgical, to which the great manuscripts of Notre-Damc polyphony testify. Monophonic rondeaux of great clarity and simplicity are found beside polyphonic works of greater or lesser complexity such as conductus and the earliest motets, from the years immediately after 1200. The conductus was originally a composition designed to be sung in procession, and uses contemporary events as well as the usual religious themes for its subject matter. Thus, for example, Redit etas aurea celebrates the coronation of Richard the Lionheart in 1189, and, in its way, contributes to shaping the legendary image of this great and noble king: 'pius, potens, humilis, dives et maturus ctatc, sed docilis et rcrum securus suarum'.
-Veronique Lafargue K (translation: Philip Weller)